Strategies for Emotional Intelligence


Dr. Relly Nadler: 
This week both Cathy and I discussed some of the emotional intelligence strategies. We took the opportunity to zero-in on some of the tools and strategies that are facilitated by taking the Emotional Quotient Inventory. It’s a tool that has been around for a while which Cathy and I are both certified in.

Between Cathy and I we have helped 1,000’s of leaders to perform in the top 10%. What we really want to highlight is this tool, the EQi, which we will tell you a little bit more about. We want to be able to take a deeper dive into looking some of the key competencies so that you can walk away from today’s call first knowing a little bit more about emotional intelligence and the reasons we are doing, and some of the research and some of the aspects about the EQi. Then it has 15 competencies and we’ll take a deeper dive into three of them.

With that, let me introduce Dr. Cathy Greenberg, my co-host. We have been doing this for years now and it’s is always a delight to work with Cathy. Cathy coaches leading executives and their entire companies on her proven happiness = profit strategies. She if authored multiple books on the science of happiness including What Happy Companies Know, her latest #1 best seller, and What Happy Working Mothers Know. We recently did a show where we talked about one of her new books called Fearless Leaders that she is doing with TC North.

She touches millions of folks as a speaker, TV, radio and media personality. She is the founder of renowned consultancy h2c Leadership; happy companies / healthy people. She currently offers friendly tips and tools to do your best at work and at home on ABC TV’s show, The Morning Blend and her new TV Web show, Your Happiness Now. You can visit her at her website, for free downloads to access your true talents, happiness and job satisfaction.

First, let me define Emotional Intelligence: It is a set of emotional and social skills that influence the way we perceive and express ourselves, develop and maintain social relationships, cope with challenges, and use emotional information in an effective and meaningful way.

Cathy, let’s talk about reality testing. I’m going to give you the definition and then maybe, Cathy, you can talk about some high and low situations. Reality testing is the capacity to remain objective by seeing things as they really are. It involves recognizing when emotions for your own personal bias can cause one to be less objective. This is so ubiquitous for folks. Maybe, Cathy, you can tell us a little bit about what it looks like if you are high or low in that.

Dr. Cathy Greenberg: Definitely. One of the things that we know is that when someone is high in reality testing you are tuned in to your environment. You are really looking around, you are assessing your environment and you are including a lot of different data factors there. When you are consistent in your reality testing and you are assessing your life situation more fairly and more accurately. You are not just looking at where you are at today, you are looking at where you want to be in the future, and how today relates to that future so that you can see with perspective and depth.

One other area which I think is helpful to people, is definitely being grounded. You feel, as a human being that when you are reality testing that you are grounded in a plan or a thought process or perspective that helps you scan and assess all situations with what we would call a more rounded point of view.

Dr. Relly Nadler: When you think about the executives that we work with; all day long they are talking and making decisions. They are having all of these emotional reactions and it doesn’t get the same focus and that is not as transparent. That is why it is so critical because obviously it does affect that.

One of the examples is I have couple of blog articles on Psychology Today about Steve Jobs. One of the things that came up with him around reality testing was what everybody at Apple called the Reality Distortion Field. It was his way of distorting reality. So he would have scored very low on this reality testing. It was also a great strength that he had so much passion about things, but there were a lot of consequences of the reality distortion field. One, a lot of people couldn’t work with him. There were a lot of people who would be retired and millionaires these days, sitting at home, but could not stand working with him. Because of unrealistic deadlines it hurt product releases. One of the people who was a board member, Arthur Rock, said about reality testing “he got ideas in his head and the hell with what anybody else wanted to do. Being the founder of the company he went off and did them regardless of whether it ended up being good for the company or not. I would say good for the company or good for the people.”

Phenomenal success, but probably around the reality testing there was the good, but there was also the bad about that.

Dr. Cathy Greenberg: That is intense. I guess some of the low qualities or lower qualities of reality testing might be being tuned out to what is going on around you, having unrealistic goals and objectives when it comes to the resources that you have at hand or the amount of tolerance that people have for your timeline if you are not giving people an opportunity to plan appropriately or see the view. I guess, being a little disconnected because that reality distortion field seems pretty intense the way you described it.

Dr. Relly Nadler: Yes.  Also, people got awards at Apple if they could stand up to Jobs. It’s not only talking about Jobs, but anybody in your organization. You may see reality in a different way and do you have the courage to stand up and say, well, here is how I see it. This idea of what is going on with me internally and then internal and external around reality testing.

Dr. Cathy Greenberg: Wow, intense stuff. Can we look at problem solving?

Dr. Relly Nadler: Yah. The last one in this area of decision making is problem solving. I’ll give the definition: it’s the ability to find solutions to problems in situations where emotions are involved; includes the ability to understand how these emotions impact decision making. So again, you could see how your IQ could be affected. Cathy, maybe you could say what it looks like if you are high or low on that and then we will end with a couple of examples.

Dr. Cathy Greenberg: Well, you know when you are high on problem solving, you are very good at gathering information, weighing it, looking at the pros and cons and being very objective about what you have gathered as information and how those pros and cons will impact the desired outcome. Another one of the qualities of somebody with a high problem solving capacity is someone who can actually identify the problems with potential solutions.

When I was a managing partner at one of the world’s largest consulting firms, we often made distinct decision to only work with people who not only brought us the problems but who brought us at least three, what we would call solutions; the one that had the easiest opportunity, the one that was kind of a middle-of-the-road opportunity and the one that was going to be probably a little more difficult but get us a better end result. So having solutions to the problems is also a way of knowing that you are high in problem solving.

Last but not least is using a systematic approach: a set of processes, a set of steps, understanding what is required in terms of people, resources and time.

Dr. Relly Nadler: You know Cathy, you have been in these meeting and so have I. You can tell when someone is a clear thinker, which would be under this problem solving. It’s in how they think and how they communicate; how they lay it out. They get people to follow their logic. One of the examples is we talked about your IQ individually, and then your EQ and if you are not dealing with your EQ, your Emotional Quotient it can affect your IQ. I have seen it so many times, it seems and I’m sure you have around the group IQ. You get all of these people who are very smart, 115 – 125 in their IQ, very, very smart; but they don’t know how to work and collaborate together. It’s another one of the EQi / EI skills. The group IQ can go way down. Here are all of these smart people but because of egos, my way or the highway, seniority, talking with confidence, not asking questions of other people; you get a dumbed downed decision. Smart people not being able to use their emotional intelligence well and get a very dumbed down decision. People are challenging it, people may have lapses in logic and it can really affect the organization and the bottom line.

Dr. Cathy Greenberg: Oh, absolutely. You can also, with one failed attempt at problem solving, demoralize, devalue and undermine the success of the entire organization.

Find out more about Strategies for Emotional Intelligence and how they can help you become a star performer. Listen to the complete interview above.


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